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The Puster Valley (German: Pustertal; Italian: Val Pusteria) is a valley in the Alps that runs in an east-west direction between Lienz in Tyrol, Austria and Mühlbach near Brixen in the province of Bolzano-Bozen, Italy. The municipalites of the Puster Valley constitute the Pustertal district.


The valley

Mountain view in the Puster Valley.

The Puster Valley is located in the western part of the Periadriatic Seam, which separates the Southern Limestone Alps from the Central Alps (and also most of the limestone Alps from the central gneiss and slate peaks of the range's central section). Half of the valley drains to the west (to the Adriatic via the Adige river) and the other half to the east (to the Black Sea via the Danube). The watershed lies in the shallow valley floor (the Toblacher Feld). The Rienz river flows westwards through the Puster Valley and the Drau river flows eastwards into Tyrol. The eastern part of the valley is called the Hochpustertal ("High Puster Valley").

East of Sillian, the Puster Valley leaves the Peradriatic Line (which moves into the Gailtal valley) and turns to the northeast towards Lienz.

The towns of the Puster Valley are located between 750 and 1,180 meters above sea level. The most important of these towns in the western valley are Toblach, Welsberg, Olang, and Bruneck; the most important in the eastern valley are Innichen, Sillian, and Mittewald.

The largest tributaries of the Rienz river form the Antholzerbach, the Ahr, the Pragser Bach, the Gsieser Bach, the Gader, the Pfunderer Bach, and the Lüsenbach. The Pustertal's largest side valley is the Tauferer Ahrntal. The Drau's largest eastern tributaries are the Sextner Bach and the Villgraten-Bach.

The Pustertal district

Map of the Puster Valley.

The Pustertal district (German: Bezirksgemeinschaft Pustertal; Italian: Comprensorio della Val Pusteria) was founded in 1969 with the merger of 26 municipalities. Its combined area is 2,071 km² and its population is over 73,000. Its main town is Bruneck. According to the 2001 census, 80.96% of the population of the valley speak German, 13.40% Ladin and 5.64% Italian as mother language.[1 ]

The following municipalities are part of the Bezirksgemeinschaft Pustertal:


External links

This article incorporates information from the equivalent article on the German Wikipedia.

Coordinates: 46°44′N 12°13′E / 46.733°N 12.217°E / 46.733; 12.217



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